Child allegedly beaten to death over “stolen cake”

ST. LOUIS A man charged with beating his 23-month-old stepdaughter to death says he did it because she was "stealing" a piece of cake, CBS St. Louis reported.

According to the probable cause statement, suspect Deonte Evans told investigating officers that Jabria Phillips had climbed on the counter to steal the cake so the 5’11″, 200 pound man hit her several times in the torso with his open hand and even harder with his backhand.

According to CBS St. Louis, the incident happened Sunday - but it wasn’t until Tuesday, after Jabria had quit eating, vomited and was so lethargic she didn’t get out of bed, that her mother, Shanika Evans, who admitted to hearing the beating, called an ambulance.

The station reported Jabria died of injuries to internal organs, and that the autopsy also uncovered seven healing broken ribs which police say Evans admitted causing a couple of weeks earlier.

He is charged with murder and child abuse. Shanika Evans is charged with child endangerment